Christopher J. Gobler


gobler-headshotEndowed Chair of Coastal Ecology and Conservation

Ph.D., 1999, Stony Brook University

Christopher.Gobler@stonybrook.edu

Coastal ecosystem ecology, climate change, harmful algal blooms, phytoplankton, ocean acidification, effects of multiple stressors on coastal marine resources, aquatic biogeochemistry

Gobler Laboratory page

 


 

Research Interests

We research global coastal change within three major realms:

Harmful algal blooms:

Our group is interested in understanding the functioning of aquatic ecosystems and how that functioning can be effected by man or can affect man. We focus much of our efforts investigating the organisms at the base of aquatic food webs, phytoplankton, and have been particularly focused on harmful algae. We investigate harmful algal blooms (HABs) caused by multiple classes of phytoplankton (cyanophyceae, dinophyceae, bacillariophyceae, pelagophyceae, ulvophyceae) in diverse ecosystems (e.g. estuaries, lakes, coastal ocean) using multiple approaches (field studies, laboratory experimental, field experiments, molecular investigations, modeling). Collectively, these studies have identified how nutrients, CO2 levels, zooplankton grazing, viral lysis, allelopathy and grazing by bivalves influence the dynamics of HABs caused by genera such as Alexandrium, Anabaena, Aureococcus, Aureoumbra, Cochlodinium, Dinophysis, Microcystis, Pseuodonitzschia, and Ulva.

Interactions between climate change and eutrophication:

The second major research focus within our laboratory is understanding how climate change and coastal ocean acidification affects marine organisms and ecosystems. The combustion of fossil fuels has enriched levels of CO2 in the world’s oceans and decreased ocean pH. The degradation of anthropogenically-enriched organic matter in coastal ecosystems seasonally has a similar effect on ocean chemistry today, while concurrently depressing dissolved oxygen levels. The continuation of these processes can alter the growth, survival, and diversity of marine organisms. Within this realm, we have been engaged in studies investigating how future and current coastal ocean acidification effects the survival and performance of algae and larvae from bivalves and fish indigenous to North America. We further strive to understand how co-occurring stressors related to both climate change and shallow coastal ecosystems (hypoxia, thermal stress, algal blooms) may act and interact to effect the performance of marine animals.

Phase shifts in coastal ecosystems:

A third area of interest of my lab group is the understanding the ecological functioning and trophic status of shallow marine ecosystems. We investigate how anthropogenic activities such as eutrophication and the depletion of fisheries may alter the natural ecological and/or biogeochemical functioning of coastal ecosystems. In many cases, we have explored the quantitative importance and impacts of various nitrogen loading pathways on primary producers or the interactions and feedbacks among nutrient delivery pathways, pelagic phytoplankton communities, benthic filter feeders, and benthic autotrophs such as seagrass. All of these studies have important societal impacts and relevance for the management of shallow, coastal ecosystems.


Publications

Complete Publications List on Google Scholar


 

The News Articles below feature Dr. Gobler:

Stony Brook Know-How Helps to Protect Long Island’s Water Supply

Photo above: Frank Russo delivers a rundown on Stony Brook University’s Wastewater Research and Innovation Facility. From Stony Brook Know-How Helps to Protect Long Island’s Water Supply on Stony Brook News by Rob Emproto on August 30, 2019. There are now about...

SoMAS Convocation 2019

Photo above: Dean Shepson welcomes the Class of 2019 at the SoMAS Convocation. Congratulations to our graduates!  The annual SoMAS Convocation occurred on Friday, May 24, 2019 at the Center for Leadership and Service. Students gathered with their friends and family...

Vax to Flax 2019

Thank you to everyone who came out for this year's Flax to Vax Run/BBQ on Saturday April 27! This event is hosted by the SoMAS Graduate Student club and had a great turnout.  The Club Officers hope everyone had as much fun as they did! The results of the race: Top...

Study Points to Kelp Farming Opportunities on Long Island

Photo above: Stony Brook University scientist Mike Doall, left, and oyster farmer Paul McCormick with kelp grown on the Great Gunn oyster farm this spring. From Study Points to Kelp Farming Opportunities on Long Island on Stony Brook News, April 25, 2019. Pioneering...

Two SoMAS Teams Awarded Ocean Research Grants to Study Waters off NY

Photo above: New York Bight Whale Monitoring Program. Property of NYSDEC and the aerial survey contractor, Tetra Tech From Two SBU Teams Awarded Ocean Research Grants to Study Waters off NY on Stony Brook News, February 6, 2019. Nearly $570,000 in ocean research...

Artificial Reef Creation off Shinnecock Inlet

On May 31st, 2018, SoMAS faculty Chris Gobler, Joe Warren, Brad Peterson, Mike Frisk and Interim Dean Larry Swanson joined New York Governor Andrew Cuomo at the first phase of the "largest artificial reef expansion in New York state history."  The Shinnecock reef uses...

SoMAS Faculty Secure $1.1 Million for NY Sea Grant Research Projects

Photo Above: According to Gobler, 2017 was one of the worst years for brown tide and red tides that cause paralytical shellfish poisoning. It covered the entire south shore of Long Island by early June and persisted through late July in Great South Bay, pictured here....

SoMAS Convocation 2018

Congratulations to our graduates!  The annual SoMAS Convocation occurred on Friday, May 18, 2018 at the Student Activities Center auditorium. Students gathered with their friends and family and SoMAS faculty and staff to celebrate the completion of their journey at...

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